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SCS works with family, agencies to help child and family

April 7, 2011

Youth Villages’ Specialized Crisis Services was called by a mother to assess her child after the child told her he heard screaming.

This was the seventh assessment for the child’s auditory hallucinations.

The SCS counselor evaluated the reports of the hallucinations and provided evidence the child was using the incidents to get what he wanted. The child even acknowledged using reports of hallucinations to get desired outcomes and reported to the counselor that “no one had ever gotten him before” when he was confronted with falsifying his hallucinations.

The counselor worked with the mother and gave her specific interventions to use when the youth reported hallucinations or other problem behaviors.

The counselor then contacted the child’s therapist and Comprehensive Child and Family Treatment worker to explain how the child used reports of hallucinations for payoff. They agreed the hallucinations were not genuine. The CCFT worker said she’d suspected this as well.

Before Youth Villages’ SCS involvement, the child was originally referred to residential treatment. The SCS counselor formed a treatment team with an SCS supervisor, the child’s therapist and his CCFT worker. The child’s case was openly discussed and processed.

They agreed the child’s anxiety needed to be a treatment focus rather than his reported auditory hallucinations.

The treatment team discussed planning for the family’s upcoming transition from CCFT to Continuous Treatment Team in-home services. Action steps were put into place to help ensure communication through this transition of services.

The CCFT worker reported on significant progress the family had made since the SCS assessment and all parties agreed that residential treatment wasn’t appropriate.

For this family, getting all parties on board with understanding that the reported hallucinations were goal-driven and not genuine provided a critical shift in the focus of treatment for the child and family, with counselors using treatment in the home rather than residential treatment.

Because of the changing levels of care, the family went through numerous treatment providers.

Being able to work with all entities involved to coordinate a program to benefit the child and the family proved most effective and gave the child and family the best opportunity for a positive outcome.

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